No Highland favour – Fotheringham
Coventry have confirmed they will definitely not be returning to
the Ricoh Arena next season.
Chief executive Tim Fisher has revealed the club are instead in
the process of securing a site in the local area on which to build
a new stadium.
Fisher says that whilst the new ground is being constructed,
they will groundshare with another club, with their plans to be
presented to the Football League at the start of June.
The move comes following a year-long rent row with Arena
Coventry Limited (ACL), who manage the Ricoh Arena on behalf of
joint owners the Alan Edward Higgs Charity and Coventry City
Fisher said: “It’s a new era and we retained specialists some
months ago to advise us on where to build a new stadium for the
club – and in the immediate Coventry area by the way”.
City claim they did not want to leave the Ricoh but they had to
make the move because “the doors locked on us”.
In a statement of their own on Thursday, ACL said “our doors
remain open to the Sky Blues”.
But asked if there is any chance of Coventry playing at the
Ricoh Arena next season, Fisher replied: “None.
“People have to understand we do not posture, we do not
threaten, because that is not how you do business, you only do
business in good faith. Always.
“We have started the process of procuring land so that we can
shift the new stadium build forward at a pace. The stadium will be
in the Coventry area in accordance with Football League rules.”
Fisher added: “We have left the Ricoh Arena.
“We were told categorically by ACL and by the council that there
was no commercial deal to be done and in actual fact they would
only ever work with the administrator.
“We were very, very clear in our minds as to exactly what was
intended. Given the position we have had to make contingency plans
to fulfil our fixtures on an interim basis – while we deliver the
“That long-term vision has us playing in the Coventry area in a
new stadium that will be designed and delivered in three years.
“All this will be in full consultation with the fans – starting
with the upcoming forums. In consideration of financial fair play
then we will own all the revenue streams that come from matchday
and, non-matchday activities, and therefore we will have every
chance of becoming a solid, vibrant club.”
Ferdinand, who has spent over a decade at United under Sir Alex
Ferguson, has not yet agreed an extension on his current deal that
runs out this summer.
And the 34-year-old, who won his sixth Premier League title this
season, announced on Wednesday he was retiring from England duty in
order to concentrate on club matters.
And United boss Ferguson said: “I think it is something he could
have done last year.
“Ending his international career will definitely help him, as it
did with Paul Scholes, and hopefully Manchester United will get the
benefit of that.”
But Fotheringham will be in no mood to do Inverness a favour on
County will stop Caley Thistle qualifying for the Europa League
if they win or draw and St Johnstone beat Motherwell.
But the rivalry on the pitch will not extend beyond those
And, for a player who began his career at Celtic, Fotheringham
welcomes the mutual respect.
Fotheringham said: “I was in the gym the other day having a
stretch on our day off and I bumped into one of the Inverness guys
and I was up shaking his hand. It’s nice to see the lads.
“It’s not like that type of atmosphere when I was a kid at
Celtic and I had to hide in the bottom of a taxi and had my green
colours on coming home from a game and there was an Orange
“It’s nothing like that, up here it’s all about the good,
“When the whistle blows, we are competitive guys so we are going
out there to win the game and that’s the only thing on our
Fotheringham added: “We know it’s a derby and you have got to go
out and win for the bragging rights for the fans.
“We are just glad both teams are doing well for the Highlands.
It’s good for this part of Scotland.”
County have not beaten Inverness this season in five games but
Fotheringham has no inferiority complex, especially with both games
at the Global Energy Stadium ending in draws.
“We are not too bothered about records because in the games so
far we have given a really good account of ourselves,” he said.
“But the main thing is to get points on the board and we want to
win the game and finish the season on a high.”